How To Fix If Pressure Washer Won’t Stay Running

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​There might be times when your pressure washer will just stop out of nowhere. Learn how to diagnose and fix it when your pressure washer won’t stay running.

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​Are there times when your pressure washer shut off after a few seconds of running?

​Don’t worry because it can happen to just about anyone. The key to fixing your machine is to make sure that you know what’s the cause of the problem and then the solution.

​If your pressure washer won’t stay running after it’s turned on, then here are a few tips on how to diagnose it and also how to fix it.

​Check them out below:

​How To Fix If Your Pressure Washer Starts And Then Stops

​For this guide, we’ll first present the common causes as to why your electric pressure washer won’t stay running and then the solutions on how to address them.

​Here you go:

  • ​Clogged Carburetor

​The common cause of a faulty pressure washer is none other than a clogged carburetor. The reason for a clogged carburetor is usually stale gas that gets stuck in the carburetor. When this happens, the engine won’t have fuel going into the carburetor, and therefore won’t work properly.

​The only way to fix this is to clean the carburetor. You need to take out any form of hardened gas present. Once you’ve cleaned it, try again. If it doesn’t work, then you might need to do some deeper cleaning.

​That still doesn’t work, your carburetor may already be too damaged to work. In this case, you may have to just change it.

  • ​Damaged Unloader Valve

​Another possible cause is problems in the unloader valve. Just to give you an idea, the underloader valve circulates the water around the pump system. This allows you to spray out water anytime you need to.

​The underloader pressure regulates the water via pressure. The pressure allows it to move around the system. The problem arises when the pressure is to great. If you think this is the problem, you’ll need to check the unloader valve.

​If the unloader valve is indeed the issue, then you might need to get it checked. In most cases, you’ll already need to replace it since it usually can't be fixed.

  • ​Clogged Fuel Cap

​The carburetor isn’t the only part that can get clogged. The fuel cap, which is a vent that lets air into the tank, can also get clogged. If this part gets clogged, then air can’t enter the tank. This causes the engine to stop moving.

​In order to fix it, try to loosen the cap just a bit and start the engine. If your engine can’t start, then your fuel cap is too clogged up and will need to be replaced with a new one.

  • ​​Clogged Fuel Filter

​The fuel filter also has the tendency to be clogged. This usually happens when you leave fuel in the pressure washer and don’t use it for a long period of time. Eventually the fuel becomes thick and sticky. In this state, the fuel can easily clog up the fuel filter.

​To fix this problem, you need to first take out all the old and sticky fuel from the fuel tank. After that, you need to change the old fuel filter with a new one.

  • ​Clogged Air Filter

​Lastly, there is the case of a clogged air filter. Just link all the other parts we’ve already mentioned, the air filter can clog as well. When this happens, the air won’t be regulated properly and push in too much fuel without the right amount of air.

​In this case, you’ll need to replace the air filter with a new one.


​Clogging or damaged parts are actually the two most common problems for pressure washers. If your pressure washer won’t stay running, then the above-mentioned parts are usually the problems. You’ll need to check them one by one in order to get a clearer picture on what’s actually wrong with your machine.

​With this guide, you should have at least an idea of what to check-- even if you are a first-time pressure washer user.

​Just follow the instructions that we’ve presented in our guide and you’ll be able to get your machine fixed right away.

​We hope that you’ve learned something valuable in this guide and have a nice day!

Mattie Keyes

Hi there! This is Mattie. When I am not making DIY projects for my house, I spend most of my time researching and writing reviews of different products that you can buy online. I am an office worker turn full-time blogger, and I hope to help other homeowners like me on how to improve and reinvent your home using the best ideas and equipment.